Plunging headlong | Pakistan Today

Plunging headlong

Qadri the man who brutally killed the Punjab Governor, Salmaan Taseer in his own possessed demeanor had interpreted the law to kill the man he was supposed to protect. Some others garlanded him when he was produced later at a court for remand. A handful of lawyers were jumping over each other to help him fight the case free of charge. There have been reports of many people congratulating Qadri and calling him a hero in as many words. His home is full of sweets and gifts from neighbors while his father is busy working overtime talking to the media present there. Does that mean we should abolish the Supreme Courts and the other lower ones too? Dismantle the law enforcement agencies, for now we shall personally decide what law is and how it will be dealt with?

The media has played an ever important role in this episode. Its eagerness to achieve ratings has propelled it to new found depths.err heights. It will report anything and everything that appeals to our baser feelings and stimulates the animal instincts. For a long time now I have felt that this war to get higher ratings has really challenged our intelligence and decency together. We are no longer bound by any norms nor roped in by a regulatory authority that is too weak to exercise just about anything. Well so far so good. The people of this country have to decide that if this is the kind of reporting they wish to have then so be it. Who can stop them? But if blasphemy is really our issue then why are the fundamentalists silent over so much blasphemous stuff being presented on the media itself? The multiple programs on numerous channels giving sinful opportunities to the youth, providing enough morsels to an uneducated mind. The fact of the matter is that some Masaliks (Sects) do not even consider each other Muslims. They openly publish hate material against each other that can be termed Blasphemous in the real sense of the word. So when the liberals have been eliminated, the time will come to space out by taking on others who differ with your particular school of thought.

Then there is the so called silent majority. As I am told these are the liberal and progressive people who simply mind their own business. However, they are very disturbed by the happenings and cant make up their minds whether they wish to take a stand or silently immigrate to another country? At best taking a stance for them means holding a meaningless candle lit protest for a few minutes.

The saddest part is that the legal fraternity that must uphold law and order under any circumstances and more than anyone else is divided and fragmented in this issue. The right of the victim family to prosecute the killer is being denied and the eagerness to become a lawyer for the killer is obvious. Perhaps it is all due to the media attention the case is receiving. I wonder if today the television screens simply decided to switch off any news about Qadris case, then how many will be eager to follow up the case till its logical end.

Already we have many kinds of laws being practiced in this one country. We have the courts as you know them. Then we have a Panchayat system in the villages. We have personal courts by the waderas in Sindh and Balochistan. We have Shariah courts run by the Taliban in the Northern region. There is FCR in the Frontier region and levys in Balochistan. Phew! It must be amazing for any student of law to grasp all of these at one go. Now we have a most unique form of individual taking up the law in his hands deciding what is right and what is not? No wonder we arouse so much of skepticism in the West by our conduct and actions and they consider us a threat. We are a threat to our own existence as it is.

I for one can live with any of the above. But for once we must sit down and decide what is going to be our course of action and what law or practice of law will we adhere to? Failure to do so can and must result in mayhem. We are fast approaching a point in time when our actions will determine if we are to survive as a society or not. (Forget about surviving as a nation).

I can assure you that the West is looking at us and our actions very closely. They are fast running out of reasons to support us and sustain our already fragile economy. We have no energy, electricity, gas, trade, commerce and law and order. How much longer can we live on our own? It may seem out of sync here but the other day I read that famous last words of airline pilots who crashed their planes were, I know what I am doing. I hope we can learn from their follies for there is still one last chance; as long as we are able to say aloud that we have made mistakes and are willing to learn from them.